Report: Sony/ATV Considering Bypassing ASCAP And BMI For Digital Royalty Payments
October 13, 2014 at 5:45 AM (PT)
In a move that would change the way some songwriters get paid for their work from digital royalties, the largest publishing company -- SONY/ATV -- is hinting they may bypass ASCAP and BMI and negotiate directly with services such as PANDORA, SPOTIFY and YOUTUBE.
THE NEW YORK POST reports, "SONY/ATV MUSIC PUBLISHING -- whose catalog includes BEATLES classics along with TAYLOR SWIFT’s current chart toppers -- plans to dump the industry’s oldest and biggest performance-rights organizations by the end of the year," and adds, "songwriters complain that BMI and ASCAP are bound by outdated government rules that result in paltry royalties from digital outlets. The pain is especially acute as CD sales and digital downloads are in decline, while streaming services are the only area of growth."
The report also notes UNIVERSAL GROUP MUSIC PUBLISHING, the 2nd largest publishing company, "is also anxious to enter into direct negotiations over digital rights. But sources close to the company say it’s more willing to wait out both of SONY/ATV’s appeals."
In JULY, SONY/ATV CEO MARTIN BANDIER said that “because the DOJ and legal process is not fully within our control, we may have no alternative but to take all of our rights out of ASCAP and BMI.”